Meet the Maker Series | Alex Checker, Makerologist of 3D Printing

How and why did you get involved with Makerologist?

I’ve been working on my own maker goals for the last few years, focusing primarily on streamlining open source 3D printing systems and developing an easy and approachable curriculum to educate my local community about this tech. I’ve since begun branching out into other open technologies, and as a result, likely got me “noticed” by the like-minded folks at Makerologist. This is probably what was responsible for me to receive an invitation to join.

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How does your work with Makerologist impact your life? It’s still early on, so that is yet to be determined. I am hopeful however that it will be in a great and meaningful way. I’ve wanted to bring a team of makers together to collaborate and play off of each other’s strength for a long time, and have been dreaming of what that might look like for an equally long time. Is Makerologist it? I am very hopeful that it is. Ultimately, I believe in the old saying, “you get out, exactly what you put in,” and if that holds true, I believe all of us in Makerologist can do amazing things.

Honoring those who came before us: When was a moment when someone impacted you and made a difference, or got you into what you do now?

I’ve had many maker mentors and friends along the way. From my father and grandfather, who taught me “the right way” to use so many tools from a young age, to mentors like Ron Hunt who opened up his shop to me to learn on some of the “big boy toys” I wouldn’t have ever had access to otherwise. My High school photo teacher that told me there was no wrong way to press the shutter button. There were so many others too, in various communities like the Burners or the Denver Mad Scientists, who taught me “the wrong way” to use tools effectively. But, that is only the tip of the iceberg, as every time we step out our front door and encounter something that makes us think for a moment, it impacts us in subtle ways that we might never remember or realize, so a nod and a smile go out to all those in the deep recesses of my memory as well.

Thinking about specific scenarios/events: When was a moment when you realized you were making an impact? (An aha moment) I’ve had a few, both positive and negative. I would like to think that every time it was negative, I stopped and reversed course, but hindsight is rarely 20/20. On the positive side of things, I take pride in my early career as a programmer, working on flight training courses that helped many of today’s pilots reach the skies. These days though, it’s seeing all the kids we have taught 3D printing to and then witnessing their endless creations thereafter.

When you look ahead, what is your vision for your work and the community(ies) you work with? I would very much like to be able to just tinker away, following my imagination, and have the outcome of that tinkering become kits that not just teach fundamentals of science, engineering, and tech, but also inspire others to join in on the tinkering.

When you see me at Seattle Mini Maker Faire, ask me about; All things 3D printing

Passion Project

MyOpen3D

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